Thursday, March 3

With age comes better judgement...

I had medic class last night (allergic reactions and anaphylaxis) and had a harrowing drive home due to the blowing snow and variable road surface. Upon reaching our house I looked at the driveway to see a considerable amount of drifting. I wonder how deep that is? This is what a scientist calls an “empirical question”. You can answer it by getting your ass out of the car and taking a 50 foot walk.

At minimum, you'd think the "how deep is it?" thought would give me pause. The problem, which all of you who have been stuck in a good snow car know, is that if you pile enough snow under your vehicle it doesn’t matter if you have all-wheel drive and/or snow tires. Your car “floats” up on the snow and you have little to no contact with the ground. Usually there is considerable compaction when this happens, as the car, perhaps obviously, weighs a fair amount. This means that the snow under the car is not easy to remove, but your only options are to get the snow out from under the car or to tow it off the drift (or, I suppose, wait until spring).

(Way-Back machine mode on)
I’m no greenhorn to this phenomenon. In 1981, when I was 16 and was looking at a closed parking lot full of drifts, I too had the thought I wonder how deep that is?. Being young and foolish, I decided to take a running start at the drift to give myself a fighting chance. This, of course, meant I was STUCK-stuck (that’s a special kind of stuck). The events that followed involved hours of cursing and shoveling to free my beloved Dodge Omni 024 (in "nightwatch blue", with AM and FM radio, don’t cha know). I have, of course, done the same thing multiple times since. I am now 39 and much older and wiser
(Way-Back machine mode off)

Back to last night at 10pm, as I sat in my car pondering the drifting, tired and eager to get inside. It was cold out. And, this part is important; I have the cognitive powers of a stroked-out water buffalo. Since I am a &&#^$ story teller, you saw this coming two paragraphs ago, and sadly last night I sort of saw it coming too, but I tried so hard to deny the possibility. I bulled ahead, knowing that speed would either save the night or cause grief (the faster you go, the more likely you’ll get through the drift, but if you don’t, you’ve packed that much more snow under your car and have drifting in front of you and behind you). STUCK-stuck.

I was STUCK-stuck last night. I tried for over an hour to get the car out, digging and digging, rocking and rocking. Despite trying to run myself over, it turned out I was not able to push my car and drive it at the same time (or, I should write, effectively push, as I did give it a good attempt).

So, into the house. Wake up the sleeping wife who has to teach at 8:30 in the morning, had to deal with two kids during the evening while I was off at medic class (this is the WORSE time at our house), and generally deserves better. Another 20 minutes or so and we get it out.

If you have any land in North Carolina, Arizona or Florida you are selling, please let me know.